I've just gotten into trad climbing, and I'm looking for gear. I've trawled the UKC for sale forums, and got what I can where I can, but does anyone know of any decent reliable websites I can visit for affordable gear?
Rock + Run often have good Rope/ Hardware deals . Excellent service from them too.
I approached our local independent climbing store and realising our family would be long term customers the manager offers us all sorts of great discounts over the years. Try out your local shop, if you have one of course.
V12 often have discounted cosmetic seconds DMM kit, worth keeping an eye on heir website.
there's a group on facebook called outdoor gear exchange, somone's selling a whole trad rack on that at the moment I've just seen. Might be something worth investigating if you don't mind second hand.
Great! I'll take a look! Thank you
I'd love to have a local shop! Sadly no such luck. I'll certainly keep an eye out on the V12!
Oooh that sounds ideal! I'll take a look! Thank you!
Dick's climbing (https://www.dicksclimbing.com) has been my go-to site for new stuff (or checking against other places) for a while, especially things like rope by the meter.
That said, don't buy new if you can get "previously enjoyed" kit. This site has some good stuff advertised. It works the other way round too.... Put a list on here of what you're after and if people are looking to sell that they can reply
What gear are you looking for in particular and what do you have already?
I see in your logbook you've logged exclusively grit; is that what you'll be starting out on? If so, you'll be able to get by with a single set of nuts, about 6 quickdraws, a single rope, couple of slings and preferably a few medium cams (0.5, 0.75, 1 & 2 in Camalots, or purple, green, red and yellow).
The nuts you can get second hand. You can pick up a set of silver Wild Country Rocks 1-10 for cheap (there is a set on FB Marketplace for £20). If you've climbed sport previously then you might already have the rope, slings and QDs. Short sport draws are mostly fine for grit and nylon slings are cheaper and wear better than pricey dyneema. You can make a saving with your cams by getting them in a set (Black Diamond and Wild Country both do multi-packs which work out <£50 per unit. DMM Dragons seem to be a bit more expensive).
I wouldn't recommend getting anything soft (slings, cams, rope, quickdraw dogbones) secondhand but nuts and krabs should be fine if they pass visual inspection.
If you can't afford cams yet, you could get secondhand hexes cheap and have a proper trad apprenticeship but you will want to cut the softs off them and re-sling with appropriate cord (will cost about £2 per hex in cord).
If you want classic nuts...
As Far As I Know... Wild Country Classic Rocks are made for them by these people https://koubaclimbing.com/index.php/stoppers and you can pickup (various places included the dreaded Amazon ) Kouba nuts as cheap as chips. Despite not having a familiar name they aren't some dodgy Chinese knock-off. Either that or you can get the same nuts with the Wild Country brand added for double the money if you prefer.
That's great thanks! I've had a look and some good stuff on there!
Yes I think whilst starting out it will mainly be grit I climb, so that's some great advice. I think ill be saving up for cams! Ill look into hexes!
There are some fascinating rip offs on that website!!! Rocks and Wall Nuts.
I can confirm that Wild Country does not get their Classic Rocks from them!!
Its really worth going to find a local shop, the advise they give, and getting the right gear first time will save you more in the long term.
Dicks in Bristol are brilliant, as I'm sure are lots of others.
DMM are world leaders in climbing gear, and made in Wales.
Buying second hand is ok, but only if you really know your stuff. There are lots of people selling ancient gear for silly high prices. Sometimes, for not that much more you can get new/lighter/better.
If you want cheap gear online, https://www.trekkinn.com are usually hard to beat. They do come with a caveat of rather poor customer service and long-ish delivery times. Still, might be worth it if you're buying a whole rack of cams and not in a hurry
I sold a full rack of gear through Outdoor Gear Exchange in literally a minute or two. I was quite amazed at how many people were ready to buy second hand gear. I was scrupulously honest about the age and state of the gear, and said although I was happy to climb on the slings on the cams and hexes and so on, I was pricing it for the buyer to spend an additional 50 quid at Needlesports buying their precut cam and hex replacement cords to swap them all out. I clearly could have asked for a lot more, but it felt right selling it at the price I did.
If you are new or newish to climbing just be a bit wary - I've seen people selling very old gear there (often little used) and not really acknowledging that the kit is at least, say, 25 or more years old, and asking I feel a lot for it. Not a problem for nuts or cams probably, but you might be able to get modern well designed krabs from Decathlon or GO Outdoors for much the same price as some late 80s or early 90s stuff where the strength rating is still on there in kgs not KNs.
This pretty much sums up the difference between old/secondhand metals and softs for me: https://dmmclimbing.com/Journal/December-2011/Research-cooperation-at-DMM
Anything textile is likely to fail well below it's original rating, where metal doesn't seem to deteriorate much at all, even if it's been left rotting in a gully for 20 years. When I first started climbing I would never use/trust cragswag nuts because I didn't know their history. Knowing a bit more now, if they look alright, they almost certainly are.
That's really helpful! Thank you!
This was a really interesting read! Thank you!
It amuses me on "fleabay" there a few examples of very questionable antiques advertised as "Vintage" and for much more than the equivalent new item. For example I can see 4 "Clog" quickdraws advertised right now (although the Krabs are much newer). Bear in mind Clog was bought out by Wild Country in 1986 so the slings can't be that new!!
Anyone want to spend nearly £50 on 4 unsafe QDs? rather than about £32 for 4 brand new ones from Decathlon https://www.decathlon.co.uk/p/climbing-and-mountaineering-quickdraw-rocky-m-polished-11-cm/_/R-p-304930
All very strange
Edit: The same seller is selling a "retired" very old rope 50m for £49.99, for not that much more I can buy a brand new one if I look carefully. This is insane. Anyone want to human test it with some big whippers?